We’ve been waiting a while for Perodua’s forthcoming compact SUV – its codename, D55L, first surfaced back in 2019. Well, the wait will soon be over, as the national carmaker has confirmed that the car will be revealed in exactly a week’s time, on March 3!

UPDATE: We’ve driven the new Perodua Ativa! Read our first impressions review here.

Perodua opened bookings for the car last week and released preliminary specifications and pricing. The one thing we’re still waiting on is the D55L’s finalised name, but even this we’ve pretty much nailed down – soon after the order books were opened, a legitimate-looking leaflet surfaced on social media containing the Ativa moniker. It hasn’t been officially confirmed, however, so we’ll wait and see if it ends up on the car.

Whatever it will be called, the D55L will be based on the Daihatsu Rocky and Toyota Raize, riding on the Daihatsu New Global Architecture (DNGA). Sharing much of its componentry with the Japanese partner’s latest and greatest, it will offer several Perodua firsts, not least of which concerns safety.

For the first time, all models will come standard with the Advanced Safety Assist (ASA) system, including autonomous emergency braking and the brand’s first lane keeping assist, lane departure warning and auto high beam. The AV version, however, will get several new goodies under the Driving Assist banner, such as adaptive cruise control, lane centring assist, blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert.

Other bits of new kit include matrix LED headlights, seven-inch digital instrument display and nine-inch freestanding infotainment touchscreen on the H and AV variants. The D55L will also mark a new chapter for Perodua as the company embraces downsizing for the first time.

All models will be powered by a 1.0 litre turbo engine, almost certainly the 1KR-VET three-cylinder from the Rocky and Raize. That mill makes 98 PS at 6,000 rpm and 140 Nm of torque from 2,400 to 4,000 rpm, sent to the front wheels through a new D-CVT that adds gears and a planetary gearset for high-speed driving.

Prices are expected to range from RM62,500 to RM73,400 on-the-road without insurance. As such, the entry-level model will undercut the larger seven-seat Aruz by some margin, but will be more expensive at the top of the lineup. However, the car’s significant advantage in terms of equipment should provide recompense.

Now that you know when the D55L is going to be revealed, all you have to do is sit back and wait. As usual, we’ll be bringing you comprehensive live coverage of the launch, so stay tuned. In the meantime, what are your thoughts of the new car? Sound off in the comments after the jump.

Our coverage of the 2021 Perodua Ativa D55L SUV


GALLERY: Daihatsu Rocky in Japan


GALLERY: Toyota Raize in Japan

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